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10 essentials for a casual wardrobe update

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10 new staples for a casual work wardrobe refresh

(Source, left: madewell.com; middle: frankandoak.com; right: zara.com)

You might want to give your style a subtle refresh this month, regardless of whether you are going back to work or need to take a break from the video calls in your sweats. 

After all, there’s likely a gap — and a range of possibility — between what you might have worn to work pre-pandemic and what you’ve been wearing to work from your home, especially if your office has a dress code. You don’t have to sacrifice comfort. It’s possible for your everyday clothes to feel fresh and new without changing their fit, shape, or colour. 

Here are 10 new picks to showcase the top trends in workwear for the season. 

Preppy knit vests are a favorite of ours, and they’re back in style this fall. Look for a slightly oversized fit — and a round neckline will be easier to style than a V-neck, which can look more retro or collegiate. 

Purl Knit Vest, $59.90, Zara

The machine washable cotton dress is more tailored than the housedresses or nap dresses that have been in high demand over the past year. It’s also much more comfortable due to its generous fit. Bonus: Noémiah designs are made in Montreal using organic and sustainable fabrics.

Coco Cotton Dress, $245, Noémiah

The versatile denim shirt dress is available in sizes XS/S up to 5XL/6XL. It can be tucked into a full-length skirt or loose-fitted jeans, and worn as a shirt.

Strip Oversized Denim Dress, $228, Oge Ajibe

These trousers look like pyjamas but are dressed-up. That’s the pitch for these Lezé the Label pants with a removable belt. They are made from recycled nylon from fishing nets at 15%. 

Haven Pant, $139, Lezé the Label

It looks great as a top, but you can use it to brighten up your basics with a colorful layer. You can wear it with a sleeveless or cut-out dress or under a classic jacket or cardigan. 

The Printed Long Sleeve Mockneck, $59.50 Frank And Oak

Uniqlo offers a great selection of flannel shirt options at a very affordable price. This patchwork one will make you feel like you are in the ’90s. 

Flannel Checked Long Sleeve Shirt, $29.90, Uniqlo

This sweater mash-up, which is part polo top and part heathered knitting, is a fashionable way to keep warm in the fall. It can be worn with a wool blazer, or a white turtleneck. 

Tames Ls Mouline Polo $255, Ted Baker

Trending this year is the return of cargo pants in both athleisure and twill fabrics. The Levi’s version is more office-friendly thanks to its sleek cargo pockets, tapered fit and tapered length. 

Levi’s XX Chino Cargo Fit Men’s Pants $118, XX Chino

A simple blouse in a rich autumnal shade is always a good idea. The viscose and wool one shown here will look great for both Zoom and in-person meetings. For maximum impact, make sure you have it tucked in. 

High Neck Blouse, Massimo Dutti, $129 with Tie Detail

The floral corduroy jacket is available in sizes XXS through XXL. It has a boxy, dramatic shape with a cozy, padded feel. It’s perfect for fall walks whether you’re heading to work or taking some time out for lunch at WFH. 

Corduroy Dumont Quilted Jacket, $286, Madewell

Truc Nguyen is an editor and stylist based in Toronto. Follow her at @trucnguyen.

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